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Christmas Cookies for Santa: 15 RD-Approved Recipes

Santa and his helpers need a cookie break when they arrive at your house with presents! Try these 15 dietitian-approved Christmas cookies for Santa and make sure he always comes down the chimney at your house!

Dietitian-approved Christmas cookie recipes

The Holiday Season is Here

I’ve been in the business of making Christmas cookies for Santa for many, many years.

I have collected several Christmas cookie recipes over the years.

From simple dipped pretzel rods to my famous Castle Christmas Mix and much more, the holiday season is when I get my baking groove on.

And, even though I have college kids and young adults, we still fuel Santa and his helpers on his biggest night of the year, Christmas Eve.

It’s part of our family tradition.

Santa Cookies for Everyone

Even if you don’t celebrate Christmas, the spirit of the holidays is undeniable.

If you plan on celebrating the holiday season in any way, consider the following Christmas cookie recipes to share with your “helpers” this holiday season.

They are great to take to holiday parties and perfect if you need Christmas cookie exchange recipes.

The following recipes are dietitian-approved and easy to make.

I’ve asked my dietitian colleagues to offer up some of their healthiest, decadent, tastiest options for this post.

As usual, they’ve hit it out of the atmosphere!

Santa and any company you may entertain over the holiday season will be very pleased to have any of these cookies for Santa on their plate!

15 Christmas Cookies for Santa

Vegan Cowboy Cookies from Sharon Palmer, The Plant-Powered Dietitian

You could call Santa a cowboy…traversing the world in one night. What would be better for a “cowboy” than a cowboy cookie? A vegan one, to boot!

Gingerbread christmas cookie recipe

Easy Gingerbread Cookies from Tawnie at Kroll’s Korner

Gingerbread cookies go hand-in-hand with the holidays. But, these little gems are stamped, which makes them all the more adorable.

Add these super-easy to make gingerbread cookies to your regular Christmas cookie routine.

Flourless Nut Butter Cookies from Shannon at Lone Star Nutrition

These hearty cookies include both peanut and almond butter blended together with molasses.

Yes, I am always interested in a recipe with molasses.

Did you know molasses is a great source of iron?

The fact that this Santa cookie includes only 5 ingredients (you know how much I love a short list of ingredients!) is icing on the cookie.

Well, not really, because this little cookie has an optional chocolate frosting, too!

Pepparkakor (Sweedish Ginger Snaps) from Halas Nutrition

Swedish Gingersnaps, called “pepparkakor” are a classic Swedish Christmas cookie. They are thin, crispy, and spicy.

And hard not to love.

Lightened Up Seven Layer Bars from Liz’s Healthy Table

The latest makeover from The Meal Makeover Moms are sticky, gooey, over-the-top decadent Seven Layer Bars

The bottom layer of her bars calls for—hold your breath– chickpeas (AKA garbanzo beans), a nutritious ingredient that they sometimes use as a fat replacer in desserts. 

Maybe you tell your family about the beans? Maybe not?

Thumbprint Christmas cookie recipe

Thumb-Print Cookies from Sally at Real Mom Nutrition

Sally shares her mom’s recipe for Thumbprint cookies, which also happens to be her husband’s favorite cookie.

They are as cute as a button…or thumbprint! Make sure these make Santa’s platter of cookies!

Frozen Yogurt Bark from Lauren at Bite of Health Nutrition

Pretty as a picture, this bark.

Filled with nuts and dried fruit, and nestled into vanilla Greek yogurt…and frozen.

[Related: How to Choose the Best Kids Yogurt]

Lauren cleverly added pistachios (green) and dried cranberries for a festive twist.

Give these a try—even on a non-holiday event! This is sure to satisfy your sweet tooth!

Vegan Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Cookies from Kara, The Foodie Dietitian

You can always count on Kara for clever combinations and use of inspiring ingredients.

These vegan peanut butter chocolate chunk oatmeal cookies are gluten-free, free of refined sugar, and the perfect treat for your loved one (or yourself!). 

No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Bars from The Nutritionist Reviews

If baking turns you off, then these cookies for Santa (really, more like fudge than cookie) are for you!

No-bake means you don’t have to turn on the oven at all.

Just mix the ingredients together, let them set in the refrigerator, and slice them up. How easy is that?

Spicy Ginger Christmas cookie

Spicy Ginger Cookies from Chelsey at C it Nutritionally

Warm, sweet and spicy, soft and chewy. These spicy ginger cookies are exactly what Santa and his helpers need.

Cranberry Almond Biscotti from Dixya at Food Pleasure Health

A double-baked cookie flavored with almonds and cranberries.

A perfect accompaniment to coffee or tea, or used for a cookie swap.

Healthier Chocolate Holiday Treats from Liz at Better is the New Perfect

Make these better-for-you treats as holiday gifts and to snack on at home.

Dipped in chocolate is always an enticement, but to make calories “count,” even goodie calories, Liz has added dried fruits, such as apricots and raisins, which are nutritional powerhouses providing natural sweetness, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients.

Who says holiday treats can’t add to your health, too?

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Haystacks Christmas cookie recipe

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Haystacks from Ann & Lesley at My Menu Pal

This is your go-to holiday season recipe — super fast, super easy, and actually, not so bad for you!

The combination of dark chocolate and peppermint is so yummy, I don’t think you can wrong.

This recipe is perfect for a hostess gift, teacher gift, kid’s holiday party, gift swap, or just a nice treat to make with your kids.

Grinch Party Poppers from Jessica at Good Food for Kids

Not a cookie, I know, but a fun, kid-friendly treat that Santa might appreciate, too.

White Chocolate Coated Holiday Mix

White Chocolate-Coated Christmas Candy from Yours Truly

I’ve been making this holiday treat for years, and I recently made it public just a couple of years ago.

After many, many requests (I was stubbornly keeping it under wraps), I let it go to the universe.

I probably make 5 or 6 batches of this each year and send it off to teachers, friends, and family helpers. I always have it on hand.

And, no, it’s not Puppy Chow.

What is your favorite Christmas cookie for Santa? Any easy cookie recipes for kids your family likes to make?

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  1. I want to make every one of these! Thanks for including my healthier chocolate treats. I am making them by the boat load right now and coming up with new combinations!